Skip to main content

tv   Washington Journal  CSPAN  October 14, 2013 7:00am-10:01am EDT

7:00 am
impact of the shutdown and sequestration. "washington journal" is next. >> good morning, it is monday, october 14, 2013. today marks the columbus day federal holiday. with the country now 14 days into the ongoing government shutdown, the focus this week has turned to thursday's that ceiling deadline. the treasury department has warned that the federal government may not have enough money to cover its bills after thursday. this morning, overseas markets are already showing signs of unease. all eyes are on congress to see whether a deal can be made or whether a further impasse would leave the country on the edge of default. yesterday, some members of congress to to sunday shows to express optimism that a compromise was in the works. as it take you through all the
7:01 am
thoughtse ask for your on the debt ceiling. we ask how confident you are that we can reach an agreement before the deadline. if you are outside the u.s., it is 202-585-3883. you can also join us on all of your favorite social media pages , on twitter and facebook or e- mail us at journal at c- a very good columbus day morning to you. i want to take you to the latest headlines from around the country on this that mimic impasse -- on this debt limit impasse. here's the front page of the journal-constitution."
7:02 am
the "lobe" -- over to the front page of the "financial times." we will reach you from the front page story of the "washington times" today.
7:03 am
for more on the talks that are going on behind the scenes, i want to bring on billy house, national journal congressional correspondent was been helping us cover the twists and turns of what is going on. billy house, good morning to you. thanks for coming back and joining us. here's a story from the "national journal" this morning. that sense of optimism coming from? optimism, they are boiling the issues down to spending cap levels for the next andmonths or even beyond the length of the debt ceiling extension.
7:04 am
the problem is a series of disagreements on length of time and the other aspects of other concessions that might be added to this package has agreed upon. >> was a schedule of meetings today? what are you watching today? >> meetings will begin in the morning to join leaders. those are behind the scenes. officially, the senate reconvenes at two. house number two took off saturday on what can be described as a half, house members (. they will be returning officially in the afternoon but around 6:30 p.m. for votes. >> what is the role that the house is playing right now? it seems like at the end of last week the house was inching towards a deal with the white house, but now it's focus is seem to turn to the senate. >> one thing that house republicans who control the chamber are worried about is that something might land in
7:05 am
their lap from the senate. with just hours to go before thursday's debt ceiling deadline . what they're going to start talking about in earnest today is whether they should simply wait to be jammed on something or come up with something yet again to pitch themselves over to the senate. ideas could be much of the same thing that they have artie done. airing an extension of any timeframe and reopening government but attaching concessions like repeal the medical device tax which goes toward paying for a small , theon of obamacare affordable care act, or other things like the so-called bitter amendment which would end health insurance subsidies for numbers of congress and their staffs. >> who dealmakers right now? the front page of the "washington post close quote today -- >> essentially it
7:06 am
is reason mcconnell but it in reality it is their lieutenants because of some past tensions. most of the talks will go through probably senator schumer of new york for the democrats and lamar alexander for the republicans. over on the house side, paul ryan has in recent weeks been in the background, but in recent days has emerged as a major player trying to put something together. who is getting a lot of attention is senator susan collins of maine, a republican. she was on cnn's "state of the union" yesterday. i want to say -- onto play little bit of what she said. >> the fact is we have a responsibility to govern and we are continuing to talk. i am still hopeful that at least we's art a dialogue that did not
7:07 am
exist before we put out a plan. realnk that i have made a contribution that way and that elements of the plan that the senators murkowski and i have put forth will end up in the final compromise. >> billy house with the "national journal." what is the role that senator murkowski is playing your? >> she's turned to come up with some sort of compromise plan. the problem with the so-called collins plan was that it maintain sequestration level spending through january 15. have said at that date in early january even lower spending levels would've kicked in automatically. for democrats, they don't mind a short-term agreement that would keep those low sequestration levels in effect through perhaps
7:08 am
november 15. they have been marking up bills for the fiscal year 2014 that began in october at a much higher level. budget negotiations to address what they think should be a repeal of parts of sequester if not all of it, they don't want to agree to some package that would keep things as they are for another five or six months, even three months. >> last mission for you this morning, the shutdown situation and the debt ceiling, are these things now tied together or is there still a chance that they get solved separately? >> of course the overriding concern seems to be the debt ceiling deadline on thursday. i suspect that both sides want to do everything all at once, at least for a temporary extension of both. democrats are pushing for a more lengthy debt ceiling extension. they don't want to do with this in a few weeks. --y could put up with a
7:09 am
again we have the holidays coming up on both fronts they realize that these would be very difficult items to get through and the business community does not want to have to deal with the uncertainty of both the government shutdown and more so a default during the holiday season. congressionals a correspondent with "national journal." thanks for continuing to help us follow the story. >> thank you. >> here's another headline from the "washington post their code something a lot of senators are doing today is watching the financial market. senate leaders await reaction of the financial markets this morning. this from the "wall street journal."
7:10 am
another headline on that same subject comes from the "new york times." asian markets uneasy as u.s. debt negotiations stall. we're taking your thoughts and comments this morning on the subject. also have an ongoing poll on facebook page that is we are asking can a debt ceiling deal be reached. just about 50 votes so far and more folks saying that it will not be reached. here is a comment from rob bloomer.
7:11 am
we'll be looking at our facebook page and twitter. phone lines are open as well. we will start with bertha from florida this morning on our line for democrats. good morning, bertha. caller: good morning. i just want to send a message to all the voters who sat home in 2010 plan to sit home in 2014 -- you have no one to blame but yourself for letting these extremists take over our country. it is not going to get better, it is going to get worse trade is not about democrats or republicans, we have extremist in both. you make sure they share your values before you go and vote. please vote. thank you. susan is up next from
7:12 am
kingston, illinois on the independent line. caller: it would be better for the republicans to get all the stuff straightened out fast because the longer it takes them they look like they are more and more controlled by the tea partiers crowd the longer the obstruction goes on. everybody knows it is the republicans who are obstructing and the gop can save itself by throwing the tea she terrorist party under the bus. got to get rid of those tea partiers. thank you very host: host: georges on our line for republicans by way of washington this morning. george, good morning. hello? . want to say
7:13 am
politicians vote in the administration and congress only thinks about their interests if they care about the people there should not be this big problem. if the administration says we are free to say our problems, [indiscernible] speechnot see the free in the u.s.. george, we're talking about the debt ceiling deal. we are asking our viewers are confident they are that a deal can be reached by the thursday deadline that the treasury department has set out. as we said some members of congress went on the sunday shows yesterday to talk about this issue. here's new york senator chuck schumer on cbs's "face the nation."
7:14 am
>> i am more optimistic than most of we can reach an agreement. that is one place for the house republicans and the president were not at total loggerheads. a lot of it depends on how you define revenues and how you define entitlement cuts. open up theld be government immediately for a. of time before the sequester its and then have serious discussions where we might be able to undo the sequester. i am optimistic that could work. we are taking your calls and comments this morning. we want to know how confident you are that a deal can be reached before thursday. senators are talking right now, they will be talking today, but theirs is the deadline. the treasury department has set out. robert is on our line for democrats from out in california this morning. robert, talk to us about your level of confidence on this debt ceiling issue. caller: i'm actually confident if the republicans can get out of the way.
7:15 am
i would like to see the american people demand that the republicans get out of the way. has theheir right mind confidence to think that the republicans could assist in governing this country the way and they have obstruct it person the worst financial condition since a great depression. this is a disgrace and the american people should be outraged with them. they couldn't get out of the way. thank you. on a line was robert for democrats. we'll go to the republican line now. david is from east hartford, connecticut. david, good morning. caller: good morning, john. day 14 of the shutdown streak and i can hear you on the line right now. host: i can hear you, david, go ahead. caller: you're asking me how confident i am they can raise the debt leading by thursday -- the debt ceiling by thursday, . host: host:
7:16 am
you want to keep the government shutdown? there's also this debt ceiling issue this morning that we are be -- couldld default if the detailing is an raise. do think the debt ceiling should be raise in the government just a shutdown? caller: i am i hearing is a shutdown to put it that way. andow it needs to be raised what was the compromise? (, pay our bills, something like that? i don't know. i guess we're asking each other the same question. from connecticut this morning. a few tweets coming in on this question we've asked you today.
7:17 am
the impact on global economies of the subject of a story in "new york times." i want to show you a clip of
7:18 am
christine lagarde who also went on the sunday shows yesterday. here's a bit of that. cracks when you are the largest economy in the world, when you are the safe haven in all circumstances as has been the into thatcan't go creative accounting business. you have to honor your signature. you have to give certainty to the rest of the world and you have to make sure that your own economy is consolidating that welcome recovery that we have seen in the last few days. it impacts the entire economy. that was international monetary fund christine lagarde talking about the impacts around the world. talking about a bloomberg story on the subject.
7:19 am
we asking you this morning three days before the treasury department says we will hit that deadline how confident you are that a deal can be reached. justin is from south hills, arizona, this morning on our line for caller: independents. justin, good morning. , thank you morning for taking my call. i am at a loss for words because you just hit the nail on the byd. you made a comparison someone who wrote an article
7:20 am
about germany defaulting on their loans. isn't it ironic that we are basically going down that same path yucca i won't make any implications about that. one thing i was brought up to believe is that the republican party is a party of bad ideas. and that the democratic party is a party of no ideas. so when you asked me about raising the debt ceiling my question to you is why didn't anybody listen to ron paul regarding that bubble? that bubble that everybody is trying to push forward. he is to be a congressman and he used to run for president. that's what? it is too late to vote for him for president, but we are now feeling the shortcomings of what he said was going to happen. and everybody is ignoring it. of his son,ou make
7:21 am
rand paul, the senator from kentucky who is also expressed concerns about going to that debt ceiling? i believe that he differs on his father regarding foreign policy, but when it comes to domestic and economic policy i believe they are both on the same page and he is keeping quiet because he does party.t to upset his own but he has come out and said we are in a position to negotiate. what that means is we have the party, to republican stop this from happening. why aren't we doing so? when we do have the money to pay for -- we don't have to go over the cliff and not be able to pay our bills. host: just in from arizona this morning. we are asking you today how confident you are that a debt ceiling deal can be reached. we have a poll on our facebook page. folks are dissipating in it. more people thinking they are not confident that a deal can be reached. those who say that it will, a
7:22 am
few more comments from our facebook page. don writes in. we're talking debt ceiling this morning. we're actually going to be having an analyst from the bipartisan policy center on the next to talk about the mechanics of what actually happens after october 17, after that thursday deadline. that is in our next segment of the "washington journal." just getting your sense of how confident you are they deal can actually be reached. michael is up next from michigan on our line for democrats. michael, good morning. caller: yeah, good morning. i am pretty confident they will
7:23 am
make a deal as soon as the stockmarket crashes. i think this is just a big lawyer to manipulate the stock market so that rich people can buy when stocks are very low and as soon as they do that they will sign the debt ceiling agreement and stocks will go up and everybody will make a lot of money. that is all i have to say. just watch the money. host: michael from michigan this morning. jim says tea parties turns save this country from itself to prevent us from going the way of detroit on a national level. that is it. one of the tweet this morning we played you a clip of senator collins from maine, a republican. joseph ramirez writes in
7:24 am
rob is up next from stockton, california on a line for republicans. rob, your level of confidence you heading into thursday. caller: i don't think they're going to make the connection. i think there's going to be a deal. i think what they should have underneath or on your orange wall there and back that congress is the federal debt calendar with the federal debt clock showing how much every 10 minutes and every hour our country goes into debt. people do want to realize and deal with the debt. party, andhe tea even though i'm not a member of it, is getting a black eye because they're bringing that tension to america saying look at the debt and everybody wants to run right past that. john? rob from california this
7:25 am
morning on our line from republicans. glenys from kentucky this morning. caller: i would just like to make a comment or two. one, i think both parties are acting like two-year-olds. two, the people that vote and put the amend their, they should not go out and vote at all when the 2014 election comes around. so that they would understand how we feel about what going on in washington dc. there is nothing going on except a big lot of stubbornness. both sides are very stubborn. especially the republicans. i have been registered a republican. i do not vote republican at all now. i probably won't ever vote again because of the situation delay they are going. i don't think either party will reach a debt ceiling. those parties are too stubborn and act like they are kindergartners fighting over a
7:26 am
toy. boehner should be put in a room and make them work this out until they are let out. they should be kept in a room until they work this out who they are the two that are fighting against each other. i think this is ridiculous that our country is in the shape it's in due to two parties that can't agree on anything. kentucky thisfrom morning. one other story that it will show you on the debt ceiling. this from the latest issue of the "christian science monitor." charting the rise of the debt limits over the years line back to the early 90s. the treasury secretary says he will run out of funds on thursday to pay bills after that. the "question science monitor"
7:27 am
story says should the that limit ceiling raising the routine? often the cap on the debt ceiling has been raised without fanfare or debate. that is a recent edition of the "christian science monitor." we are going to continue taking your calls and comments on the debt ceiling. we want to know how confident you are that a deal can be reached by thursday. it is day 14 of the government shutdown and plenty of stories out there on the impact of the
7:28 am
government shutdown. i want to show you a clip. yesterday former defense secretary leon panetta was on " to talket the press hairc about the shutdown of governments effect on national security. >> we have 12 combat squadrons that have been grounded. half of the air force is not combat ready. we've got ships that are not being deployed. we have training rotations that have been canceled. we've got 800,000 federal employees that have been furloughed under sequester and that are not taking a hit on the shutdown. all of this is impacting on our readiness and our ability to be able to handle a major crisis outside of afghanistan. host: former defense secretary here's ata. picture of a veteran turned down
7:29 am
a memorial barricade. a story on the hundreds of veterans who descended on washington for the million vets march on the memorials. frustrated with the government shutdown, protesters toward on barricades on close monuments and memorials and how them outside the white house. the closure of money and slot the city have been one of the most visual symbols of the shutdown. quote they are our memorials and belong to us," said steve nettles who traveled from west virginia to participate in the demonstration. protesters been made their way to the vietnam veterans memorial and the lincoln memorial before converging at the white house shortly by noon yesterday. there is a picture from that protest again in today's "washington post." were taking your calls and comments this morning. want to know how confident you
7:30 am
are the deal can be reached on the debt ceiling before the thursday deadline that the treasury department -- the treasury secretary jack lew has warned about. randy is next from missouri on our line for democrats. youy, good morning. caller: do a wonderful job. what is your name by the way yucca host: randy on a talk about your thoughts and comments. let me see this year. i do not believe that there will be a resolution to this debt ceiling by thursday. there just won't. i think we have to put a positive face on whatever this conversation is between mcconnell. mcconnell is in a senate race. the less mcconnell has come to a conclusion in a decision that he is ready to move on to another , then he canlife
7:31 am
probably work a deal. otherwise, if you must remain in the senate, i'm a democrat and i really just like mcconnell, but if you must remain in the senate, there will be no deal here it >> if he makes it deal, he loses the primary in kentucky? caller: there is no doubt he will lose that. ceiling, there is no new spending. sonding has already occurred what we're doing is actually just paying for what we are he spent. it doesn't add to the deficit. this is the one thing that i would really hope c-span, just to educate the callers is coming in. i am not telling you to try and convince them, that is not your job. --host: ast tell them
7:32 am
host: randy stick around. we have someone from the policy center who will talk about the mechanics of the debt ceiling. what happens after thursday and how we got to this point third stick around. that is coming at 7:45. saying about c- span is that it is not your job ,o convince people of something but give them the facts and if they insist on sticking to their decided then they have to become [indiscernible] host: we try to give you the facts all morning. we have three segments for you. we will talk about the affordable care act and the implication of the opening of those online exchanges and in the last segment on this columbus day morning we will be talking about amtrak and rail ridership around the country.
7:33 am
we have got about 15 minutes left to talk about this issue of the debt ceiling yield that is being discussed in the senate. members of congress talking today on that. how confident are you, michelle, from churched and, maryland on the republican line. how confident are you that a deal can be reached on thursday? caller: i don't believe a deal will be reached on thursday. i think anybody in this country wants to default on anything, however at some point, and this is what the republican party is trying to do right now, is put their foot down. this country we have got to stop spending the money that we are spending. at some point, that is what we're are doing now. put your foot down. somewhere.ut back but we can't keep doing this. i mean it is on our children and grandchildren. they need to stand up and fight for stopping the spending. i'm hoping that a deal won't be reached him even though i don't
7:34 am
want to default on any of our debt, but at some point we just have to say stop, stop spending so much money. host: michelle from churched and, maryland. some e-mails coming in on this. when other e-mail, this from janet h from winter park, florida.
7:35 am
she wants to know, question for our next guest on the failure of the debt ceiling and the fdic. we will get there with our analyst from the bipartisan policy center. in about 10 minutes or so. oscar wrightson on twitter junction,m hopewell new york on the line for independents. mark, good morning to you. caller: i would just like to alleviate everybody's fears. we are not going to default on our debt. the way it works is that the money comes in every month,
7:36 am
president obama has authority to prioritize where the money gets spent. he can choose to pay the debt are not pay the debt. i do believe he will choose to pay the debt. one of your other callers had to for --that we are paying we have artie spent the money and this is more money to pay the things we have artie agree to pay on. that is correct. everybody here that are so willing to comment about the shutdown would do a little bit of research and look it up for themselves, there would be no default. the money would be there, president obama has the authority to prioritize for the spending is going. the only way we were default is of president obama does not want to pay the debt. mark from new york talking about this prioritization plan that is being proposed to avoid default. it is an issue that one of the nation top credit rating
7:37 am
agencies talked about last week in a letter that was circulating around congress. that is moody's. moody's said in a memo dated out hobart seven, here's a story from "national review" online. we will talk more about that in a few minutes with our next guest. lindsay is next from dover plains, new york on our line for democrats. lindsay, good morning. was proud to serve in the united states navy from 1969 to 1973 and i served in vietnam.
7:38 am
i am proud to be a veteran. this finger-pointing situation that blame game thing we are past that issue. we have to resolve the problems in this country and be united. are working for the united states of america they have to act like they're united themselves. anyone that thinks they are not exonerated from the repercussions from whatever decisions they make, and that includes their families, their grandparents, their children. no more of this politics. i've never seen so many different energies as far as greenpeace, tea party, republican, democrat him all this different kind of entities right now. we have to stand united in this country. we fought for this country. i am proud of this country and i want to continue to be a proud nation. we need to resolve these problems with educated who are alleople members of mensa and this
7:39 am
congress situation. let's act like it very it host: lindsay from dover city new york,. that is a former treasury secretary an economic adviser to president obama. he withdrew his name as a possible next fed chairman before the appointment announcement of president obama's pick of janet yellen. keywords into the "washington post."
7:40 am
policies that indirectly address deficit issues that is lawrence summers writing in the "washington post." i've got a few minutes left in this segment to get your sense of how confident you are that a deal is going to be made this week before the debt limit ceiling is reached on thursday. mary jane is from tears fill, ohio on our line for republicans. mary jane, good morning. caller: high, hey, i didn't know what i would get in or not. i think the main thing is that
7:41 am
if we cannot get president obama to go along with a few things, nothing is going to happen. it is in his court. who would ever think that we of this the main part debt we are incurring is because of this obamacare. aheadple would have known of time that the irs was going to be in charge of our health care, i don't think anybody in their right mind would've voted for it. if you get a letter in the mail, just think about it, if you get a letter in the mail that says we would like to take a look at your tax returns, what kind of a feeling do you get the ipo now, we're going to get the same people, they're the ones that we're going to be looking at to save us from some kind of a crisis at the hospital. we will bejane, getting to the affordable care act it in one of our later segments morning.
7:42 am
we will have someone from kaiser health news to talk about the implementation of online exchanges. i want to get a few more folks in in this first segment of "washington journal." we're asking you how confident you are about a deal being reached by the thursday debt ceiling deadline. ,renda is from tara gold arkansas on our line for independents. brenda, good morning. caller: i don't think they should come to a deal. i think we need to face the reality that we have to address the debt. i think is a cozy government down it will force you president to actually make decisions trade we have gone from one crisis to another, financially since he is been in office. i think it is time that we look at some departments and decide where we can cut. agree --host: do you think it is time to make those decisions now before the debt limit is reached or do you think we should go over it and see about the impact.
7:43 am
caller: there's no other way to get the president to negotiate. we are wasting $.51 of every dollar, that is according to manyes" there are so places to cut. every time we do this they wait until the last minute paid well, stop it. just go ahead and let it -- is going to crash sooner or later. let's just do it now, get our priorities together. the department of education should be in the states. there are hundreds of things they can do. we don't have to spend his money. the media is the one and the newspapers are the people that are telling us that the world is going to end at midnight on the 17th, but it isn't. they will just have to prioritize just like i do. i get to go out and eat. go to movies because i can't afford it. the government needs to decide what they can afford. the seniors they are already going to get paid. they say that that is ok. the military is already getting paid. the people who are disabled or going to get paid.
7:44 am
let's take care of the debt which we have the money to do all of that. and then let's prioritize what else we can afford. just like americans have to do. host: that is brenda from arkansas this morning. here is the front page of the "hartford current" talking about what will happen if the debt ceiling is breached. that's the league paragraph of that story from the ." rtfordcourant
7:45 am
frank, how confident are you about a deal that is in the works right now happening before thursday? caller: i am pretty confident that will come along. i just hope and pray that our president stands his ground. people don't realize, when the banks were in a big financial deficit they only wrote a three- page letter to congress in order that they may get 750 billion dollars. what we are asking for now is only about $70 billion more than what they got. party, standard ground. is going to hurt for a while, but we will prevail. host: that is frank from lancaster, pennsylvania this morning. bellg up, senator steve will join us to discuss the looming debt ceiling deadline. later we will talk with julie appleby of kaiser health news
7:46 am
about the rollout of health insurance exchanges under the affordable care act. we will be right back. ♪ >> who want to know how the government shutdown is affecting you. >> make your short video message about the shutdown and uploaded from your mobile device that
7:47 am
counts. tom at c-span. see what others are talking about. are at the lou henry hoover house here on the campus of stanford university. it is significant because this was the primary residence of the tovers and it is significant the late lou huber because she is the one who designed it. ships -- seek that at such a strong sense of design or choose not architect edgar lucky to have lots of the original drawings and documents correspondent to the design and construction of how she wanted the house to look. lou henries influence surely came from her travels in the southwest united states, pueblo architecture, also from her travels and north africa when she traveled with herbert hoover. it is a great legacy of lou henries because she designed the house, she created it. it was inspired by her ideas and she had very close involvement in also aspects of the houses
7:48 am
creation. >> meet first lady lou hoover tonight live at nine eastern on c-span and c-span three. also on c-span radio and c- washington journal continues." the federal government will not have sufficient funds if the debt limit is not in reached by thursday. we're joined now by steve bell of the bipartisan policy center. mr. bell, as we start this discussion on the debt limit, some folks might not realize that we have already hit the debt limit. explain how that works. guest: we hit the debt limit on and the treasury secretary, using things called extraordinary measures, he borrows money from the government retirement fund, he borrows money from a couple of other internal government funds.
7:49 am
he is using those extraordinary measures to continue to pay the bills. jack lew said in his letter, his latest letter is this -- i'm going to exhaust all my extraordinary measures and have only $30 billion cash on hand on the 17th. people have misinterpreted that to mean he won't be able to pay any bills after that. that is not true. he will have to depend on daily cash flow, which is very difficult to predict. at some point between the 18th in the 31st, he will not have enough money to pay his bills. the 17th is an important day though because on that day, treasury has a large auction. they were like that auction of american debt to go off law. if you can get this solved in some way to make the market since we haven't solved the 17th, we will not have an increase in interest rates which we normally would have. host: default is a word which
7:50 am
ut a lot.hrown on ou this is not a matter of calculus. 17th,e point after the the treasury department will not have enough money to pay its bills. that is just a simple fact. people will say to you, if we don't pay the bills, lockheed martin for billion dollars, or joe's roofing because he changed the roof on the county or federal courthouse, that is not really a default. but actually it is a default. those are contracts that are we have made with people and it puts treasury in a difficult position. people say that treasury secretary lou could prioritize. actually, no, he can't. there's no legal authority for him to do that and people who say don't worry, nutmeg comes in every month that he will be was.
7:51 am
debt, the sovereign debt, and interest on the debt, those people are assuming he has the power he does not have. host: this is the prioritization. this memo from moody's that we have been poring over for the past week. explain what movies is saying here because there been talking about prioritization, right? guest: moody's is asserting with no justification in law or precedent that the treasury feiler tax.n that he can pay the debt, that is the sovereign debt, the interest on that debt and then he can pick and choose what us to pay. as a matter of fact, treasury has artie indicated in each of the last three years what they will do is not that. let's say you had $100 billion that you need to pay monday. and you've only got $80 billion cash on hand. to treasury is most likely wait until tuesday or wednesday when they have accumulated enough money and then pay all of the bills that were drawn monday
7:52 am
all in one fell swoop. the reason being, it is very difficult to find a justification to allow someone to pay bill or debt on our interest and not pay social security or not pay medicare providers or not pay veterans compensation and lots of other things. you have to make choices on. we can talk about some of his choices but we also want to get in some calls and comments on you. we're talking to steve bell who is a senior director of the economic policy project at the bipartisan policy center. your questions on this debt ceiling issue. he is a man to ask the questions to. as we wait for folks to colin, you talk about bills being due on different days. part of what you did at the bipartisan policy center is to actually look at the bills that are due coming up at the end of october and at the beginning of november. let's talk about first the debt that is maturing between october 18 and november 15th.
7:53 am
what are our problem days here or days that we should be more concerned about? i think we should be concerned about the 23rd because we have a social security payment which is due by law statutorily. he can get past the 23rd you can probably get into the 28th of 20 ninth before you really run into real difficulties. that the markets and the source of prices people, bond markets are issued last week that they don't like that's going on. the bond rate tripled interest that americans had to pay on the debt for four weeks. the four-week bill was triple what was the day before. that is pretty extraordinary. right now, even though the sounds are technical, we are paying as much interest on the is 2-year note, as we are on the 30 day bill. that hasn't happened in many
7:54 am
years. the last time we had interest rates this high at the short end was in 2008. as i recall correctly, 2008 was not the best year we have had. to the lastnt back time we're in a situation where we were approaching a debt limit back in 2011 and estimated the cost of that debt. that was the so-called fiscal cliff and there's a whole lot of hullabaloo blog that. we lost 1.3 billion dollars in additional interest rates and that you're alone. that is another 1.3 billion that could have gone to something useful. weng the same methodology, think that over the next 10 years we will have $20 billion in money that will simply go to increase debt. he blew are in the bond market, which is the largest market in the world, want to be able to say to their friends that they
7:55 am
have given bonds to as collateral, that is good money. you can take that as collateral. it gets pretty technical, if you ask someone who runs a bank, or you ask someone who is actually loaning money, mortgage lenders. he would tell you that this is a very serious problem. a question over e- mail from janet h from winter park in our last segment. she wanted me to ask you in this segment, how will the failure to raise the debt ceiling effect the fdic, the agency that insures banks and financial institution deposits up to $250,000? guest: that is a legal question. it is our assumption that doing great legal research said that will stay in place. the $250,000 insurance will stay in place from the fdic. i don't continue. host: she says that she's worried there will be a run on banks like the great depression. that something you're worried about? no, not a run on the banks.
7:56 am
but certainly a run by all these in wall street, tokyo and europe, where all of a sudden they are afraid that when we do something every day that raises tens of billions of dollars, they won't be allowed to do it. while the sounds can a strange, here is what happens. the guy needs $10 billion to run his business on wall street. just a bunch of treasury securities. united states issued treasury securities. that is supposed to be deemed riskless asset. that takes no risk with it. , i ghost is bank and he says want to borrow some money from you and i will put down as collateral this treasury debt. what we saw last week, extraordinary, was people refusing to take november and october maturing dates for the united states treasury as collateral. we saw them have to take a two percent cut for example in asia.
7:57 am
fidelity, one of the biggest mutual funds in the world say we are no longer accepting october and november maturing debt from the united states. people seem to think because the sky hasn't fallen but the lights are still on that nothing that is going to happen. this will make what happened with lehman brothers and after that look like minor in comparison. some callerset and. questions for steve bell of the economic policy center who has been setting the issue for years now. kerry is up for us from jasper, alabama on the line for democrats. terry, good morning. caller: yes sir. i was calling to find out why i have not heard anyone address at theue this morning end of the dates before the adjournment for the weekend, the speaker changed the rules disallowing them to independently call for a vote.
7:58 am
i heard it said that only the speaker can call for a vote now which has forced a majority of republicans and democrats who would have a majority voted this time to call for a vote. there is only handful of republicans now that are holding it up and the speaker of the house has effectively shackled them. host: are you following? guest: yes. the german is processed the correct. last week it looked like there was going to be a bipartisan majority that would be able to pass something. it wasn't specifically outlined, but something that would get a out of this debt problem. is speaker decided, which his want, he can do this, not to bring the bill up, thinking it was premature. there will be a special place in heaven for john boehner for what
7:59 am
he has to go through. everyone who knows him and i know him well believes that he wants to have an end to this nonsense. yes, there are 3250 republicans in the house that no matter what are not going to go along with anything. they do it for a variety of reasons, but it is sort of like when we used to say when i was young, we have to save the village by burning down the village. congress bysave destroying the judicial process. i think people are so used to this that they think this is going to go on forever and every year we are going to threaten a shutdown and every year everything is going to be fine. at some point, we are going to be paying higher, much higher interest rates for this kind of behavior. host: steve bell is a former staff director on the senate committee. now he is the senior director of
8:00 am
the economic coliseum project at the bipartisan policy center. he is taking your questions as morning on the debt ceiling. charles is good morning. caller: thank you. i would like you to comment on how much the quantitative easing has affected our debt and how much revenue we lost during those eight years of tax cuts, how that affects the debt. thank you so much. guest: when you cut taxes dramatically, you'll increase the debt. there is a theory that, "do't worry, there'll be more revenues." but has been discredited that is a theory some people
8:01 am
hold. the fed has quadrupled the size of its balance sheet. they are buying $85 billion every single month of american treasuries and mortgage-backed securities. a lot of people concerned about, "you have that kind of balance sheet. that is a huge." will it cause inflation? it hasn't had much impact on our debt. nnet. next up is a caller: good morning. -- annette. caller: we are $17 trillion in debt. that is a scary number. we keep saying we want to raise the debt ceiling. is there really a ceiling? if we don't try to control
8:02 am
spending, is this going to be the only answer every year, to fight as to how much to raise the debt ceiling? we will owe more and more. to me, it is scary. guest: there is no doubt in my mind it is scary. trillion is money we have already obligated ourselves to pay. those are the past bills. going forward, as we spend more money and we run deficits every year, that adds to the debt. if congress does not do something dramatic, we have a
8:03 am
becomesn where our debt unsustainable. we will have to pay so much money on servicing our debt that we'll have to do away with a lot of things. the 10-last 40 years, year note determines to a great extent the mortgage payments that americans make. that average has been about five percent interest rate on all the 10 year notes to be issued. because of the last four years, that is about 2.6% now. if that were to avert to the average of the last 40 years, we would pay more money on debt interest in all of the department of defense. we will go back to some of
8:04 am
the charts you have come up with. you estimate the u.s. would need roughly $17.8 trillion debt ceiling to cover the obligations through december, 2014. >guest: that is more than we are at right now. host: in terms of the decrease that the bipartisan policy center thinks we need to have, where would you put it? guest: if you want to be safe and get by the craziness of the november 2014 elections, we 1.2 is an estimate. we do not know what kinds of things will happen. if we had to do something in iran. recessionanother where revenues fell short, that
8:05 am
number would be bigger. but right now, looking at what inproject, we think 1.1 troy dollars would get us through -- $1.1 trillion would get us through. host: i want to play with a bit week.k lew last [video clip] >> i do not know how you could possibly choose between medicare and food assistance. these are obligations we have made. we wouldn't have the money to necessarily pay our troops were veterans in full. our systems were not designed to pay our bills. our systems were designed to pay our bills. i do not know how you can make the decision. i do not think the
8:06 am
administrative process would permit the system to work. we write roughly 80 million checks a month. the systems are automated to pay. bipartisan policy center has tried to figure out if you choose to pay certain programs, what other programs you could not pay. talk about these charts from your latest report. guest: everyone talks about how we can pirate ties. -- prioritize. you have some revenues coming in from fees and taxes. you have more expenditures the second half of this month then you have money coming in. so you have to make a choice. so at some point, you are going
8:07 am
to run out of money and you have to decide what not to pay. this is not calculus. this is simple arithmetic. you have this much money coming in and you owe more than you have coming in. jack lew and i have been friends for many years. case, this is a very simple thing. you could have had hank paulson formers are bob rubin, a democratic treasury secretary, and they would say the same thing. we cannot pay all of our bills the rest of this month and you're asking us to choose between statutory payments. we are required by law to pay salaries, those kinds of things.
8:08 am
how do you want us to break the law? "face the is from nation" yesterday. [video clip] >> there are no payments due until november 15. what moody's says there'll not be a major impact. >> that is not what the secretary of treasury says. .hat is not -- you tell me >> he said a lot of things a week ago. the white house is trying to scare the markets. that is unfortunate. that will is a date not have a major impact less the white house can create concern about that. host: steve bell.
8:09 am
guest: there are a variety of follies and myths. he is right. nothing much will happen on the 17th because he will have $30 billion cash on hand and he will be able to use that cash on hand for two or three or eight days to pay the bills. i do not think anybody is trying to scare markets. largest bond trading house in the world. what you are seeing in the bond market is unprecedented. perhaps the congressman is right, trading bonds on wall street and commodity futures. but there is a chance he is wrong, which is what most of my friends trading bills and bonds will be saying. i am not going to take this
8:10 am
piece of paper you gave me. these are the largest mutual funds in the world. you want to believe what you hear or do you want to hear what you see, which is the behavior of professionals who say wait a minute, this is serious. i cannot remember the last time the lastam only 70 -- time the united states sovereign debt was rejected as collateral by a counterparty. you say, wait, i will only give you $980 million chris i am worried you may not be able to pay this back 100%. >> up next from pittsburgh, pennsylvania, here to talk with steve bell.
8:11 am
cindy, good morning. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. this may sound simplistic and i do not mean to insult any of our senators or congressmen. a good source of revenue might be for them to forfeit a month's salary. when you have a business, very often this is owners have to go without their salaries in order to meet the bills of the business. that is just one source. there are americans who believe in this country and have believe that we are getting benefits for those who need them. i do not understand why we do not set up a fund where those people who want to see this country get out of debt could not donate from their hearts
8:12 am
whenever they feel they can afford perhaps to honor our veterans, perhaps to honor some errant congressmen who is seriously working. i do not understand why the congressional party members have not allow this to go so long and have taken vacations and have not worked on the problem and have let it run to the last minute. host: steve bell? guest: members of congress are still receiving their full paychecks. would it make a difference in the behavior if they were not? in some cases, yes. as a symbolic matter, it is terrible we have all of these furloughed people and people that are contractors not getting
8:13 am
paid. it is a bad symbolism. andid that in world war i world war ii. we had victory bonds, where people could buy these bonds and get paid after the war was over. we have done that type of thing. we have very few of those opportunities now. some people have argued the president has the power to raise the debt limit on his own. here is a question about the 14th amendment. guest: this is a very
8:14 am
fascinating question. some people have said the 14th amendment can be used in order to pay the debt of the united states even if the debt ceiling is not raised. there are others like laurence tribe who say you cannot do that because that would lead to lawlessness. i wonder what he thinks the present situation is going to lead to. if the president of the united states said tomorrow morning we're going to default on some of our debt, we are not going to pay these, what do you think i should do? you cannot go down in history as the first president who defaulted on american sovereign debt. we do not know what the supreme court might rule. order me asation is
8:15 am
treasury secretary to pay the bills as they come in on time and in full, and those people who feel they have been aggrieved can take this to the supreme court. host: what has the white house said about the option? guest: that line of reasoning has been rejected. i think i know why. they do not want that situation to recur. they are not want the president -- host: sounds like you think the option might be on the table. guest: i do not know what secretary lew will recommend. for me it is a binary choice. are you going to pay the debt? or are you not going to pay the debt and do what every central banker said, possibly destroy
8:16 am
the global economy? this is not a game we are playing here. this is a global system with trillions and trillions of dollars at stake. some of his says do not pay the t should look deb at their savings because there will be substantial reductions in the amount of money they have in their savings. it is a real problem that affects real problem. host: taking your questions and comments. tom is up next from georgia. tom, good morning. caller: good morning. i was calling in because the debt hase 2009, the skyrocketed, more than all of the presidents combined.
8:17 am
cliffgo over the fiscal unintentionally, then we cannot service our debt. the way they are doing it now, going to the default on our debt ceiling is the way of correcting it before we get to the actual cliff. host: you are saying you be in favor of reaching the debt ceiling? itler: it is better to do now them only cannot service our debt. host: steve bell? guest: there is a body of thought that agrees with that and says we have to drop the line right now. we cannot let this opportunity for physical reform go. i am sympathetic with that.
8:18 am
wen i was staff director, enacted the program in six months. i am sympathetic to that line of reasoning. if you do not pay your debt, you will find quickly you are accumulating much more than you have anticipated. if we go back to the average interest payments on the 10-year note, if we do that in the next couple of years, we will not have any money left for national defense. a will consume all of national defense. ais is a very -- we have short term problem and a long- term problem. said that we have to phase in a fundamental change in taxes and in spending. you cannot do it abruptly but
8:19 am
you can do it over the next 10 years and avoid a real debt problem if we start doing it now. we, the gentleman is right, have a serious problem. let's not make it worse. changes to these entitlements. host: if you want to follow along, it is available online at we have a few minutes left with steve bell to talk about his report. tom is from georgia. bill is up next from georgia on our line for an dependents. bill, good morning. caller: good morning. i was under -- i thought after the clinton administration we
8:20 am
had a budget surplus and after ae bush tax cuts, we were trillion.ollars -- $8 the iraq war was off the books. was i wrong? guest: you're absolutely right. we made an agreement between the congress with clinton that led to four years of balanced budgets. two unpleasant things happened. com bubble burst on wall street and that caused a lot of problems. 9/11, 2001.nt was almost everything changed on that day. we started spending more money
8:21 am
on defense. we had to spend a fair amount to keep people from being too fearful. and part of that was tax cuts. some of it was spending on defense. we did have balance wages under clinton. --wes a bipartisan deal did have balanced budgets under clinton. given thatnder why pattern of behavior we are not able to do the same thing now. we are held in trawled -- en tralled bivariate progressive wing of the republican party and a conservative group of republican: never vote for anything democrats want. those 15% goal way and the rest
8:22 am
of us will make a decision here. what is happening now is the tail is wagging the dog. the far left and the far right are really complicating and impeding agreement. host: do you think it is still 15% and 15%? guest: i know about gerrymandering. i talked to some of these people and their staffs pretty candidly. there was a majority in the house republican caucus that if you could put the right deal would join sufficient democrats to pass some kind of layout now. it is more clear in the senate. to do that you might have to take on some of the ideological folks. ted cruz would be mad. steve king would be mad.
8:23 am
point, the speaker and the majority leader in the senate are going to have to put together a deal that tells the extremists on both sides, sorry, this is serious business, we do not have time for your ideological nonsense. host: how confident are you that will happen? guest: the 17th is not a dropdead date. on the 17th, the treasury will have $30 billion cash on hand. that is real money to pay bills. say a bill comes in on friday. our estimate of the dropdead date is probably somewhere 31st ofthe 23rd and the this month. i am not someone who waits for
8:24 am
the last minute. you will see interest rates go up. think theple do not 17th is the end of the western world. int: a comment from carly b. minneapolis. and a question from steve j in illinois. guest: that is a very serious question. britsars ago, a bunch of sat around and they were concerned that there was a decline in the great british empire.
8:25 am
we used to make fun of them. the only problem is they were right. 1975, the40 and british pound was no longer the reserve currency in the world. as china grows and is more and more things are done in non- dollar transactions, there is some all stability that we could lose that reserve currency status. it would take 10 or 12 years. we no longer would be able to just issue as much money as we want to without a negative impact on our interest rates and on our economy. we are playing with what someone once called and exorbitant privilege. i do not think many people on the hill understand that and i think most americans take it for
8:26 am
granted. it would be interesting to see if the reserve currency became the chinese or the brazilian currency. we would have to live like the rest of the world. we would have punishment and reward for our fiscal hater. host: we will be speaking about the affordable care act. a question for you on twitter from robert. guest: i have no idea. the congressional budget office at one point said it did not. there are many things i do not know and one thing i do not know is the affordable care act. host: marie is up next from new york. good morning. caller: i want the guest to talk about the red states that depend on the government.
8:27 am
they continue to be ineffective and they continue being you wrote in republicans -- eroding republicans. i am concerned about my pension and my 401(k). a lot of people do not have 401(k) and pensions. they do not care. this never happened before. jump i will let steve bell in. guest: there is no doubt she is right if we do not solve this. 401(k)'s are going to get stronger. the stock market is not the best judge of things. the bond market is so much more important in this question. you saw what happened after
8:28 am
lehman's bankruptcy. you saw what happened to the world financial system and to the economy. we have not recovered yet. this is a much bigger deal than lehman. this is the united states government not paying its debt. what would you like me to do? would you like me to pay social security? we are not going to have that opportunity when market say, you have to pay us 5% interest if we take it 10-year note. that will bring it home to everyone. the value of bonds one chopped precipitously. host: todd from ohio, good morning. caller: how are you doing? host: good.
8:29 am
go ahead. think: how long do you you would be the boss before you got fired? guest: not very long. i did a comparison on the federal government. on the you had a company new york stock exchange and you had these characteristics -- its growth was slowing genetically, it's pension was growing dramatically, it was not producing and selling as much of its product, and they were increasing their indebtedness quicker than they were increasing their revenues? you would not want that stock and pretty soon that company would be bankrupt. you would say there was only one reason we are not bankrupt,
8:30 am
because we can print as much money as we want and because we have the reserve currency in the world. we have the ability to not pay the full price. argentina paid the full price. russia defaulted on its debt and paid the full price. because we can print as much as we want, we get away with behavior that in almost any other country would lead to default. host: steve bell from the bipartisan policy center, you can check out his work at always appreciate you coming on. guest: thank you very much, john. host: we will assess the rollout of the new federal health insurance exchanges with kaiser health news.
8:31 am
new later, joseph boardman ridership numbers about amtrak. a.m. eastern time. bob corker says there is plenty of blame to go around for the partial government shutdown and specter of default. he believes the house republicans demanding a retreat on the new health-care law was not one that bore fruit. he charges that there was overreach in trying to get the gop to rollback the automatic spending cuts known as sequester. he doesn't focus on who gets blamed. dimon of jpmorgan chase talked about the consequences of not reaching a deal while on a
8:32 am
panel. know.d you do not want to that johne reporting urgent to set a date and work toward the new syria. he said the new president has lost the legitimacy to be able to bring people together. there was an agreement last year that calls for the establishment of a transitional government. john kerry is in london on the last stop of a trip that is taking him to japan, malaysia, and afghanistan. those are some of the latest headlines on c-span radio. c-span2 has shown over 40,000
8:33 am
hours of programming. >> that is the answer. more women in politics. things would change. i said i would write a book and she basically said ok. to taxes andjected being ignored by the elite media, not getting any kind of special interest like the fat cats get. we're all in the same boat. that is the real problem. >> we're the only national television network devoted exclusively to nonfiction books, every weekend throughout the fall. we are marking 15 years of booktv on c-span2. >> c-span. we bring public affairs events from washington directly to you, putting you in the room at congressional hearings, white house events, briefings, and
8:34 am
conferences, and offering complete gavel-to-gavel coverage of the u.s. house, all as a public service of private industry. we're c-span, created by the cable tv industry 34 years ago and funded by your local cable or satellite provider. and now, you can watch us in h.d. >> "washington journal" continues. look at theue our implementation of the affordable care act with the help of kaiser health news. to date we are joined by julie appleby of kaiser health news about the new health-care exchanges that represent a key component of that new law. theas been overshadowed by shutdown and the debt ceiling. 14 days into those exchanges come how would you grade they're running so far? guest: not looking real good at the moment. they were downplaying
8:35 am
expectations. there was talks about some bombs and glitches. these have gone beyond glitches. there have been problems. once they get on, they enter information and the screen disappears. there is a lot of difficulty. most appears with the federal exchange for about 36 states. doing theirstates own exchanges are having fewer problems. host: those federal exchanges are the ones on this map, courtesy of kaiser health news. the grayish colors are the states running federal exchanges. exchanges running better than the federal exchanges? guest: we are getting reports
8:36 am
from kentucky and washington and they are able to sign people up. washington state says they signed up about 10,000 people so far. kentucky, 9000. california has signed up about 16,000. it is not entirely clear why the states are doing better. in some of these state exchanges, you do not have to create an account initially. you can go online and shop around. you have to create an account before you can see how much the premiums are on the federal exchanges. that seems to be one of the first hurdles with the federal exchanges. host: we want to hear your thoughts and experiences with these exchanges. 202-585-3880 if you had a good
8:37 am
experience. 202-585-3881 if you had a bad experience. if you intend to check out these exchanges, 202-585-3882. we want to hear your thoughts and comments so far. julie appleby is a senior correspondent with kaiser health news. we hear glitches and then headlines like this. 14 days in.e mess" hasn't gotten any better? -- has it gotten any better. guest: these could be the tip of the iceberg. some folks are concerned there other problems when other people and role -- enroll. those kinds of issues appear to be discussed a lot.
8:38 am
hhs has increased server capacity and has reduced the amount of time that people wait. they are saying a lot of this is related to fight them. they had 14.6 million unique visitors and they are trying to boost their capacity for volume. hhs created a section where you can see some estimates of premiums without having to create an account. you cannot give specifics but you can see some general ideas about how much the primus may cause in your area -- how much the premiums may cost in your area. host: is it the technical side of the website or is it in the design, that it is too complex? what is the bigger problem? guest: i think the people are
8:39 am
saying it is a little bit of both. the page looks really nice. concerns.e of the the optics and the political discussion, is it ready to go? republicans are saying, why is this rollout so soon when it wasn't ready? talk about delaying the law. if they do not get this resolved in a couple of weeks, this could start to hamper enrollment. it is key to get people to and enroll. they have until mid-december to start up in january. there's still some time. the key is to fix this and fix this quickly. host: the sign-up started
8:40 am
october 1. coverage begins january 1, 2014. enroll byhave to march 31. explain the penalty. > guest: the penalty is $95 or one percent of income, whichever is greater, if you do not have coverage. there is a penalty. there are some exceptions. people have to have insurance. host: we are talking with julie appleby from kaiser health news . kaiser health news is a nonprofit news service an independent from the kaiser family foundation. not affiliated with kaiser permanente.
8:41 am
cover hospitals, doctors, insurance, and all parts of the health care industry. we want to hear our viewers' experiences with these exchanges. if you had a good experience, 202-585-3880. bad experience, 202-585-3881. if you're intending to get on, 202-585-3882. phone lines are open. what advice would you give to folks who were in the last category? marketplaces are generally for people that are uninsured or who buy their own insurance. there are 40 million who are uninsured. people, they get their insurance through their jobs.
8:42 am
it might be worth it to wait a little while longer and see if they can work out the bugs and then try to logon. there are other resources available. there is little will wait on the call center. you can try to enroll by phone. you can go to an insurance broker. some of the websites have the information. you are pretty much only going to see the plan that that ensure offers. host: a comment from ron on twitter. from americanon hero joe. guest: you can do that.
8:43 am
host: and avoid these exchanges altogether? guest: if you think your income federalen 100% of the poverty level and 400%, you will qualify for a subsidy that would offset that a little bit. if you want a subsidy, you do need to go through the markets place. host: deborah is up next. caller: i am hearing a lot of hysteria. poor people do not have internet or computers. all these computer glitches for the person without internet access, it doesn't have any relevance. my family, most of the people are uninsured.
8:44 am
we knew this was coming for years, october 1. i gather the information from my nieces and nephews. is not being a part of it. they are giving out the phone numbers for the hotline. we got some churches together and had phone banks. it was seamless. you call and they give the information. 100%of my family were the poverty, so they will get the subsidy. we signed up over 100 people in the first two hours. host: are you one of those navigators? guest: i am a disabled cancer patient who else might
8:45 am
community. host: explain what a navigator is. guest: they help people sign up for insurance. maybe they are at a health center or some other place that helps people sign up. and havey go online access to computers. navigators are in the states where the federal government is running the government. non-navigator assistance is in the other states. there was more money given to states running their own exchanges. there is more money available. so states like texas will have fewer navigators. grants were given to community health centers. that is another option. there are some places where you can find this information. a you do have access to
8:46 am
computer,, you can find some local folks to help you sign-up. host: align set up for those without a good experience with these health care exchanges. good morning. caller: how are you? i am excited about the acla. i was helping my sister sign-up and possibly becoming insured. the first couple of times, we tried all day and could not get on. we set up an account and were able to browse trends. now i cannot log on at all. we finally got to the plans. the deductibles were so high. it seemed every plan was a catastrophic plan. this would've been completely
8:47 am
unaffordable for my sister. virginia is not taking the medicaid money. i will hang up and listen to your response. guest: we talked about the various costs. it.premium is one piece of there could be subsidies to offset the premium. some of the plans could have $2000, $3000 deductibles. the bronze and silver plant generally have higher deductibles and cost-sharing co- pays then do the gold and platinum plans. the gold and platinum plans probably have higher remains. a woman whoy about qualified because she has a family of three. she will be paying about $200 a
8:48 am
month. she was worried about these deductibles and the out-of- pocket costs. that is something that people have to watch for. the law does cap out-of-pocket $6,300 aa maximum of year for an individual and $12,700 for a family. now that is a lot. --is less than many plans had out-of- plans pocket caps that exceeded that amount. it would be a struggle for some people. host: we have a good community of folks that follow us every day on twitter at we have this question --
8:49 am
host: talk about the spending. guest: i saw that figure the other day. there the contractors -- is a $400 million project that was talked about in "the new york times." twitter.have this on host: is that true? guest: that is not correct. host: we will keep answering your questions and comments with julie appleby. monique is up next. good morning to you. caller: good morning. i just want to say i am comfortable with the plan that i have now.
8:50 am
has donedable care act just for me. i have saved almost $1000 in a year. i had to pay for all of my birth control. a year before i did not have to pay a dime. i went to do a surgery last year, which i would have had to pay $500. this year i do not have to pay a dime for that surgery. the affordable care act is doing a good job. the american people just have to be patient. i understand the website has glitches. everything that rolls out is not going to be smooth at the beginning. i think it will do a wonderful job in the end. people tried to get onto the
8:51 am
federal website. they might need to have to go to their local state site as opposed to go through at the federal level. guest: the health care law has made some changes that are already in effect. sayspreventive care -- she she has been taking advantage of that this year. this is another thing to think about. folks talk about not wanting or needing insurance. they plan to pay for things themselves. you get a date build and you have to pay for this treatment and you have a problem. folks should consider that. when you have insurance, they negotiate the rates with the hospital. you will most likely be stuck with a higher bill. host: that was the question from
8:52 am
bill from pennsylvania. we have a law that requires all emergency rooms to take care of people until they are stabilized. you we get stabilize but you're not guaranteed any kind of follow-up treatment and that you must pay the bill. this is one reason they are offering the catastrophic plans. these plans are generally for people under 30. they cover a couple of office visits to a doctor a year. it is just in case you get hit by a bus. this covers your hospital. host: robert on twitter talks about his experience.
8:53 am
the differentut costs of premiums. guest: premium costs vary a lot. it depends where you live, your age, the plan you choose. maybe he has a large deductible. he will not be able to find a plan like that on the market. that may be a gold or platinum plan. he might want to look at a silver or bronze plan. premiums tdo vary. one of the lowest places is pittsburgh. one of the highest places is in philadelphia. host: what were the reasons? guest: it could be competition among insurers. it could be competition among
8:54 am
hospitals. maybe a hospital has a monopoly and they can charge what they want. cost of living varies. there are all these factors that go into it. the other factor is age. they cannot charge older people anymore than three times what they charge younger people. in many states in the past there was no limit. now it is limited to three to one. this could perhaps ring down the cost for some older people but it could raise it for gender people. so age is a factor. host: there is an opinion about obamacare. another question from e-mail from mike t. on how this works.
8:55 am
we have heard about signing up. guest: you need to sign up and decides how long you have to pay that first bill. it might be five or 10 days. you must pay that bill or your insurance does not kick in. host: how long have you been with kaiser health news? guest: about four years. host: she is taking your calls for the next 20 minutes or so. jerry is up next from atlanta, georgia. good morning. caller: how are you doing this morning? i believe it would work real sebelius would step down. i had a good time.
8:56 am
i gave up and went fishing. ntsb takes care of train wrecks, don't they? host: that is jerry from atlanta. we have a line for those who had a bad experience. patrick is waiting on that line from brady, nebraska. good morning. caller: good morning. i have tried every day since they went online and i have not been able to get through. the site has crashed or been unavailable. i was able to get my basic information in. the site always tells me error or gives me a blank page. i tried the phone number to find an assistant. it basically tell me if i was not english-speaking i could drive 120 mile round trip to a hospital i kate is to illegals in our area. i try the online chat and he
8:57 am
said no one was available. and so here i still sit. guest: that sounds very frustrating. have you tried that 800 n umber? that is the health care marketplace number. maybe they can help you sign up by phone. maybe give it another week or so and see if things settle down and try it again. some folks are saying you could try to find an insurance broker in your town to copy through the process. host: what is the white house saying about when they should have these glitches or willusable mess -- when the obama administration say this be fixed by? guest: they are not saying. this could go on for a while,
8:58 am
according to some experts in "the new york times." they do have some time before people have to sign up. it could dissuade some people, people like jerry who get frustrated. host: blake from suffolk, virginia. good morning. caller: good morning. my question is the affordable care act and military veteran. i am a military veteran. i have not been able to get in touch with anybody specifically at the v.a. just need to know whether i am already covered under the affordable care act. i have not bothered to go to the website yet because of the issues i have been hearing. specificed to hear a
8:59 am
answer. thank you. byst: if blake has coverage tri-care or another coverage, you are covered and you do not need to worry about it, just like people who have job- based insurance. they are considered covered and will meet the requirements. people on medicare are also required -- covered. when it comes time to fill out your tax forms, you full out the box that says i had insurance. ke, i think youyo are covered. host: we have been talking about the affordable care act. some of the issues we are talking about is those health care exchanges that opened on
9:00 am
october 1. we want to hear your experience. we have a line setup for those with good experiences, 202-585- 3880. those with a bad experience, 202-585-3881. those who have not tried yet, 202-585-3882. and for all others, 202-585-3883. kathy is on the line for those who have had good experience, kathy from tennessee. caller: good morning, how are you? host: good, go ahead. caller: i am from tennessee, which didn't have to participate, so i'm going to last night i got on and i set up through -- went through setting up the account and enrolling and picking the plan and then no problems whatsoever. guest: kathy, what did you find
9:01 am
when you were looking at plans? were there lots of choices or just a few? what did you see? caller: no, i was looking for the silver plan. i've not had insurance for six years. i am 61 years old with a pre- existing condition. i had 27 choices on the silver plan. i also looked at the bronze, which there were 12 or 15 choices. i ended up choosing a silver plan, but there were 27 choices for the silver plan. the premium started for me at 61, below $400, and then went up from there. host: kathy calling him from one of those states that has a federally facilitated marketplace. about 36? guest: 36. gray color there. modeled on the line for those who have not had a good experience, calling in from new
9:02 am
windsor, new york. good morning. morning good i was going number one because my sister lives in florida and she has had a lot of difficulty getting online. i don't know if that is because they areing that doing. i know that is -- they ran tons -- spent has money running ads to dissuade young people. in which those ads would disclose that the answer being paid for by the health care industry and/or individuals who are backing or trying to dissuade people from being involved with obamacare. the ads have absolutely nothing to do with the program itself. the other thing i'm really aggravated about is you have billionaires who never have to worry about insurance dumping millions of dollars into these states to spread misinformation about the program. any program that the federal government has ever initiated
9:03 am
has never gotten off to a smooth start. eventually we were cap the kinks. -- we work out the kinks. if they allow the program to go through the initial phases, they could have one of two outcomes. either the republic -- the plan doesn't work and republican say, see, we told you so. for the program will work, and i think it will, and that scares them the most -- on theou are calling in line for folks who have not had a good experience. have you personally try to get on? caller: no, i don't have to because i have insurance. i do now because i'm a retired new york state employee. host: i will that julie appleby jump in. what he is talking about is an act campaign that is trying to dissuade young people from signing up, saying that young people could save money by not signing up. they define and don't worry about insurance -- pay the fine and don't worry about insurance.
9:04 am
opponents of this campaign say that is was shortsighted, and what happens to the finances over time if they get seriously ill? campaigns have been financed by the koch brothers and there is a series of campaigns encouraging people not to sign up. young people are really key to this health law. they need people to go to these market places and senate because the younger and healthier people , their premiums are going to offset the costs of the older and sicker people. insurers can no longer reject people graph health conditions -- who have health conditions, or charge the more. they have to take everybody now. that is why they want everybody to sign up. that is the debate going on now. they are hoping to get about 7 million people to enroll this year. of those, they're hoping to million to 3 million of them
9:05 am
will be young people. that is their goal. host: in terms of numbers of on the federal exchanges, we have not heard much about how many folks have signed up yet, correct? guest: they say they will release the number sometime in november. some folks really want this information. host: is there anything to read into that? guest: i don't know why they are not releasing it but they are being asked to those numbers. the association of health care journalists sent a letter last week asking that they report them daily or weekly. some of the states are reporting them weekly. hhs has said it is not relevant necessarily how many people sign up in the first or second week. the bigger goals over time could so they are not releasing the numbers. they say they will tell us sometime in november. host: continued concern from folks on twitter.
9:06 am
guest: there has been a lot of discussion online that is not correct about the irs getting your medical records. that is not included when you sign up. one of the things the law does is they say they cannot reject people with medical conditions, so you are not filling up 10 pages of medical information to apply for this insurance, unlike the past. you have to provide income information, identity information. i will be verified through this system -- that will be verified to this system. you have to show that you are an american citizen, because undocumented immigrants are not allowed to get coverage through the exchanges. that kind of information is going to be cap. we're told that the hub is not storing information, that it is a pass-through. but the medical information is not part of that. grove,rank is from west pennsylvania, on the line for
9:07 am
folks who have not tried to get onto these exchange websites. you are on with julie appleby. caller: good morning. i would like to make a comment about this whole program from a little different angle. to make a disclosure, i'm a retired irs employee, and i've several years of experience working with software and contractors for the government. listening to many of the comments that are coming through, some of these failures, these problems with signing up i think ms.ram, appleby and all your other guests who have come on here have to make -- should make a statement. when they talk about these programs, they talk about it in terms of its a government program and they are causing the problem. that is not true. the software in many of these programs are being administered, -- itleast the software is being done by independent contractors.
9:08 am
these problems,. i think ms. appleby and others should fully disclose who is behind these problems. comments have been made about the amount of money, $90 million, $600 million, whatever it is being paid for the software. they talk about it, they should ask or say who is causing the problem, because i don't think it is the government or the government and police who are behind us -- host: do you feel like the government should be responsible in making sure he gets a working return on its investment when it does do these contracts? caller: well, at the same time they are paying these contractors -- i hear $600 million with the software -- yes, if it is not working they are to fix it. i had experience about this before which i am not going to get into. but the point is that when you make these comments, make sure it is the right people. host: julie appleby? guest: i think we are starting
9:09 am
to see a lot of the blame game going on. "the new york times" today talk to the vendors and a lot of the vendors are pointing fingers at everybody else -- it is not us, it is them. house gop folks have already called for information from hhs and they want to know where the problems are and how much testing was done ahead of time. rs may respond to some of that. the other thing "the new york times" is saying today is that the centers for medicare and medicaid services integrated this whole thing. they were in charge of integrating the work of these different vendors. there is some government role in this as well. everybody at some point is going to be called to discuss this and to account for what happened. host: we talk a lot about the folks you are signing up in their periods with these websites. -- and their experience with these websites. here is a front-page story from the saturday "washington post." can you talk about the other side of this? guest: some insurers are
9:10 am
reporting they are getting conflicting reports from the exchanges themselves. they're getting enrollment form, a disenrollment form, and then and the roman form for that same -- and then an enrollment form for that same person. it is not just the front end, getting onto the setting create an account and moving forward. some of the insurers are getting conflicting information as well. host: brian from indiana on our line for all others this morning. good morning. caller: hi, good morning. i'm disabled and i have had many surgeries. i don't have a secondary insurance. i live in indiana. i was wondering if i could get a backup. is there anything like that, like a secondary insurance? guest: what do you mean by secondary? do you have health insurance now? caller: i have medicare. guest: so you want a supplemental policy. this market place is not for
9:11 am
medicare and you would not be buying a supplement policy through the smart place. you can purchase supplemental policies but it is not through this market place. you might want to talk with an insurance broker or talk to your local area office on aging. they may be able to talk you through how to get a supplement policy. host: does that answer your question, brian? caller: well, in indiana, they don't give it to people other than if you are 65 per disabled. it is really high costly, something i can't afford, being on disability. guest: i see. well, you might want to then look at the exchange is up and rolling and see what you might qualify for on the exchange. maybe you would qualify for a plan that is subsidized and fits into your budget. that might work out better for you than medicare. but probably not, because managers generally a pretty comprehensive -- medicare is generally pretty conference of program company might want to have a look at that. host: on twitter guest: we saw couple of reports
9:12 am
out of a couple of states that showing 1/3 of the people signing up were young people, which is encouraging. we don't have enough information about who is signing up and who is not. is from kansas city, missouri, on our live for folks who have had good experience so far. you are on with julie appleby from kaiser health news. caller: my first time signing up i didn't have no problem. it took a little bit to get through the different wards -- boards. once you figure out the first one, it got easier. my problem is, i'm retired before i'm 60. i had no idea when i left the job that the insurance -- i was had a co-pay. i always had a co-pay to it when up to $1200, $1300 a month. i was trying to find out how this might help me as far as
9:13 am
paying that $1200, $1300 a month. medication is for me and my wife. we spend a lot of money. i'm on $2000 a month just on medical stuff. young folks, they may not realize it gets more defensive the older you get -- more expensive the older you get. they're is the number on the top of the screen and i call that number and they said it would be best for me to wait until january and then call , so i could get some sort of help based on my income. i would like to see if you could respond to that. guest: again, the health lot has subsidies for folks who earn between 100% of poverty and 400% of poverty. to is about $11,500 $46,000 for an individual. the subsidies are linked here
9:14 am
income. -- linked to your income. the amount people pay the purchase of silver plan, which is what the subsidies are tied to, would be tied to their income. it is a sliding scale. at a lower and people are expected to spend two percent of their income for the premium and at the upper end, 9.5%. you may want to look and see where you fall on that and how much you might pay. i did a story the other day to look at a family of four earning about $50,000 a year. based on that, they would be paying 282 dollars a month because it is linked to their towards the plan, and the government would pick up the rest of the tab. people could choose to buy a more expensive plan and they would pay more or a less- expensive plan and they would be paying less. some of the costs come of the co-pays, drugs, etc., they are going to be higher in the bronze and silver plan than they would be in the gold and platinum. 250% ofs that are low
9:15 am
the federal poverty level, there to pay thenal help copayments that reduce the amount you pay every year in out-of-pocket costs. you may want to look at that and see where you fall on that scale. host: astral in this segment from -- last call in the segment from middleton in west virginia for the line for folks who have not had a good experience. good morning. caller: good morning. i've got two comments. i tried several times and got all the way to the end to verify -- always getting knocked off or something, and then i have to start all over and fill out all the information again. that is monotonous. so you would be saved don't have to go through every time you want to do it again. they ared thing is going to give people supplements to pay the premium. but who is going to pay those high deductibles?
9:16 am
the insurance companies owing to make all the money and the people is not going to get any interest because they have to highor all them deductibles. it is monotonous, it is not right. guest: the deductibles are going to be a problem for some people. it is what we're are hearing from consumer advocates. again, some folks who are below available will get additional help in paying those adjustable so there will not be a $600 deductible. it will be closer to the $200 range. but that is a lot of money for folks. this is paralleling what we're seeing in the job-based insurance as well. injectables go up and up as employers try to shift more of the cost of their workers. 14% of job-based insurance right now has a deductible of two thousand dollars a year or more. we are starting to see that creep up as well. host: julie appleby is senior house corresponded kaiser health news. you can follow her on twitter, ie_appleby.
9:17 am
thank you so much for joining us this month. next, amtrak president and ceo joseph boardman be here to p numbers in the future of amtrak. first, a news update from c-span radio. >> getting back to the government shutdown, with the negotiations between republicans and democrats over the weekend failing to resolve the debt ceiling crisis or and the partial government shutdown, investors are concerned that the thursday debt ceiling deadline gets closer. stock markets are down today in germany and france but are slightly higher in britain. the dow and s&p futures are also down. wall street is closed today for the columbus day holiday. more from senate banking committee member bob corker. the tennessee republican, speaking earlier on cnbc, says that the expectation that a deal may be forthcoming from talks between senate majority leader
9:18 am
reid and republican leader mitch mcconnell is very possible. he says he has had good conversations early this morning and that it is between mitch and harry. he went on to say that there is a major expectations game can manage here, adding that the wildcard is what happens if we do some thing here when it goes over to the house. the house comes in at noon today and the senate convenes at 2:00 p.m. eastern. watch the house live on c-span, the senate on c-span2. those are the latest headlines on c-span radio. waysere is very legitimate and reasons why there should be a court tried to dispute patents. but the trolls have set up shell organizations, literally suing everybody they possibly can .ithout any justification i think this piece of legislation would go a long way in protecting those and making sure we get legitimate lawsuits funneling up to the courts the
9:19 am
way they should. >> i think most americans were really surprised when the library decided that they couldn't unlock the cell phone they owned without going to their carrier. that is really not right, it doesn't respect property rights, and in fact, there is really no copyright involved. it is a way for monopolies to exert their monopoly control after somebody has purchased a piece of equipment. >> cellphone cramming is the practice of putting unauthorized third-party charges on telephone bills. in other words, charging consumers for supposed services that they never ordered and never received. but they sometimes don't notice and even when they notice it, they have to pay. to mutations issues and legislation meeting house and senate action tonight on "the communicators" at 8:00 p.m. eastern on c-span2.
9:20 am
>> "washington journal" continues. host: on this travel-heavy, stay holiday, we will be talking numberstrak ridership with the president and ceo of amtrak, joseph boardman. mr. boardman, let's start with the latest annual ridership numbers, which you have been kind enough to announce the first time publicly with our viewers on c-span. guest: morning, john. yes, that's right. anotherlion riders, record for us, and increase, and we also have an increase in record ticket revenue, up to $2.1 billion. host: 31.6 -- how does that compare with previous years, and maybe check your early days in the job? guest: my first year here was an fy09 and i did go back and look milliond in fy09, 22.7 riders.
9:21 am
we are up 16% in ridership since i came here. billion in.6 revenue, a 31% increase. there is a major change going on with passenger rail. host: we will get into the financial side of amtrak, but on the ridership numbers, why are these important and what you use these numbers for? guest: we look at it as one of our key indicators of how we are doing things right, are we doing the right things/ -- what we really look that -- i looked at the first quarter, and in that same upe, '09 to '13, we were 15%, 1.5 million riders. state-supported services -- everybody has been saying it is the star of the show here -- ridership was up by almost 2.4 million riders, about 18%. even long-distance trains are up over half a million riders in that same time. host: we are almost executive
9:22 am
one year removed from hurricane sandy. talk about what that did to ridership for amtrak. i remember seeing in the first six months of the of the northeast corridor that you are talking about was actually down a little over one percent on the six-month mark. what has happened since then? guest: we are roughly in the same area of the northeast corridor. interestingly enough, we are open to the thanksgiving holiday -- for the thanks giving holiday right after superstorm sandy and are covered substantial amount of those revenues. host: do we know how much damage the storm caused? guest: we are actually still tallying that for amtrak. we are well up into the hundreds of millions of dollars. because of the salt water entering the tunnels, and when the end of the tunnels and not only caused havoc with the ballast and the rails and so
9:23 am
forth, it was the wiring, the signal systems, everything that was in those tunnels that were not really exposed that have now been exposed. talking to joseph boardman, president and ceo of amtrak, you take your calls and comments. just announced the new ridership numbers for fiscal year 2013, up from fiscal year 2012. of thes a few numbers most recent years for you. our phone lines are open, if you want to call and have questions for him. host: on the subject of being outside the u.s., how does amtrak ridership compared to rail systems in europe? guest: oh, we're just a very small amount in comparison.
9:24 am
.urope has a rail culture we have a great board of directors and are chair man -- our chairman went over to france recently and we are talking about our next purchase of high skilled rail -- high-speed rail trains here. at the to have the rfp end of this month. in terms of that, we look at the chair at that time -- smtf is the french operation. his comment recently to me was that they buy the amount of trains we will buy on the way to breakfast in the morning. there was really not a comparison in the united states. closest, of course, is the northeast corridor. but in terms of ridership europe is far beyond us. host: some stats on amtrak. over 300 passenger trains each day, more than 21,000 miles ouf
9:25 am
connection more than 500 destinations in 46 states, d.c., and three canadian provinces. miles per are 150 hour right now. the first amtrak train began on may 1, 1971. that was between philadelphia and new york. you mentioned that europe has a rail culture. what is it going to take to create rail culture in the united states? guest: being creative. one of the reasons you see this ,rowth in rail ridership especially in the northeast corridor, john, is it is not just a phenomenon of congestion, but the younger people in this country really want to have access to wi-fi, to have access in a way that doesn't inhibit their ability to have mobility. they ride the train were they right the bus -- the right to bus inr they ride the
9:26 am
order to have access on a regular basis. we are seeing the shift globally in this country about how we do work. that is going to help us grow that activity as well. host: for those who may not be familiar with amtrak, how much money does amtrak get from the federal government each year? guest: we get a little over $1 billion. our budget is about the full billion dollars and we raise about nearly $3 billion of our own between ticket revenue another sources like real estate and others. most of the money that we seek from the federal government today's capital money for the court or to make investments. become less reliant on the federal government for our operating program. host: talk about amtrak profits. are you making money? guest: well on the that is an interesting question. we say that we make money above the rail in the northeast corridor, and what i mean by that is that when you include the capital investments necessary to make a very capital
9:27 am
intensive company like this, you don't make a profit. above do have revenues the real beyond what we need for operating assistance. those have been pulled away by congress and used to subsidize other services that we provide for congress, like long-distance trains. host: joseph boardman has been the president and ceo of amtrak appointed november 2008, and his contract was extended by the board just this past spring. we are showing images from inside union station and washington, d.c., right across the street from the u.s. capitol. we will start first with john from pennsylvania on our line for democrats. good morning. caller: good one, how are you? host: good, go ahead. you are on with esther boardman. caller: i would like to see the keystone service expanded from harrisburg westward to pittsburgh. we only have 2 trains a day in
9:28 am
johnstown and the train of the money goes to philadelphia new trainnd philadelphia -- of the morning goes to new york and philadelphia and the afternoon train goes to pittsburgh. this should be a morning train -- there should be a morning train for pittsburgh but more people would probably use amtrak. when i was a student back in the 0s, i went to philadelphia for school, and i never wrote -- rode an empty train. some went to chicago, someone to st. louis. we need that service restored again. the keystone service, there's 14 trains a day going to harrisburg and only 2 the rest of the way to pittsburgh. host: mr. boardman, i will let you jump in. guest: i think the difficulty today, of course, is that a lot of that connection has really been lost. but when you look at the keystone service itself and the rebuilding of the keystone service, even in the time we
9:29 am
were talking about a few minutes ago, ridership is up in the last four years by a quarter of a million riders. that is a 21% increase. we were carrying about one 1,250,0005,000 -- riders. when you are talking about is a service called the pennsylvanian, which just began to pay higher part of the cost and we see a potential expansion for the services in the future depending on how people use it. host: what are the new ridership numbers showing you? any surprises in terms of heavy ridership and places you didn't expect? guest: we saw the ability to increase prices across the northeast corridor and still see an increase in ridership. we williculty is one run out of capacity. not just capacity on the train
9:30 am
itself, but the ability to move more trains on the court or. -- corridor. it is not just us on the court or -- corridors it is commuters as well. a little bit higher, that is something new for us. we see that growth in ridership in the states and on the long- distance train. it is happening across the board, john. up long-distance trains. here are stats from the brookings institution in d.c. talking about 2011 numbers for amtrak, and 2 numbers i want to point out is the $47 million -- 2011 operating surplus on routes traveling less than 400 miles. 614 million dollar operating deficit in 2011 on routes traveling over 400 miles. how do you stop that $640 million deficit on the long
9:31 am
range routes? guest: we cover just about half $1 billion on the long-distance trains. therefore it is going to be even a little higher than the $470 million. we are climbing over half $1 billion to run the long-distance trains now. the ability lee -- the availability of a network across this country has been a critical piece of what he congress wants in this country, just like they want an interstate highway system, the next generation air traffic control system. they want that activity on the surface of -- that connectivity on the surface of the country could we have the ability to connect more and more communities. 323 of our stations across the rural part of this country have no other service but amtrak. over 500 stations across the united states. there is everywhere we go and ability to increase and improve the economy in those
9:32 am
communities. businesses, people being able to get where they need to go, amtrak brings business to those communities. host: jeff is up next in south carolina on outline for republicans. you are on with mr. boardman. my question is if amtrak is doing so well, why do we need to keep giving it government subsidies back online guest: morning, jeff. part of the issue here is that there is that sense of subsidy out there, but what we're looking at is the same thing as any other motive today that we operate in this country, whether it be the highway system or the aviation system. to make that service available to begin with, there has to be an investment. part of the investment comes from congress. congress wants us to connect this country together, and we are not able to make a profit from these long-distance trains as we were just talking about. f's question is when
9:33 am
you are asked several times when you go behind -- before the house transportation and infrastructure committee. john mica from florida is one of amtrak's biggest critics up there. i want to play clip from one of your most recent appearances, grief from this past summer, before congress meant mica, and get your comments. [video clip] >> you have heard a fairly rosy picture painted by some of the current operators and advocates of amtrak. let me just take parts of this apart your -- here. first, the northeast corridor -- no one is a bigger fan of coming up with out-of-the-box thinking. if we privatize the northeast corridor and opened it up competition -- open it to private competition -- amtrak would be put out of business in it is still because a soviet-style train operation and as long as you have that,
9:34 am
people will not be thinking out- of-the-box. we truly open competition, that is going to take place. some joseph boardman, tough criticism there from john mica. your response? guest: not a soviet-style railroad. host: the privatization issue keeps coming up. did you take the -- did you with the privatization issue to rest? privatemtrak is a corporation. we have a great board of directors driving us to huge abridgments. -- huge improvements. there is the leadership to see the revenue increases we talked about, a lower reliance on the federal government for any kinds of subsidies. this is the right thing for us to do. when you have private sector folks -- it might have been the talking about-
9:35 am
high-speed rail and how to whatce it and what to do, they kept telling congress was that in order for us to be involved, you are going to be able -- need to be able to guarantee an availability payment to us for any investments we make. that is the same thing to the rest of the private sector that it is going to cost a subsidy by the united states congress to that the services that you are really looking for, whether it is on the northeast corridor or long-distance trains or long- distance services. host: how long have you been involved in train issues? guest: i guess i got really involved when i was commissioner of transportation for new york state and we were trying to make improvements. it has been a good 20 years at this point in time. host: what did you do before this position and amtrak? guest: the federal railroad in a straighter for president bush and before that, commissioner of transportation in new york. host: mr. boardman is taking
9:36 am
your comments and questions for the next 25 minutes or so. henry is from florida on outline for independents. -- on our line for independents. good morning. caller: my question regards passenger train fare for both coach and also one for secret service that would allow me to of the unitedtour states. in other words, living in florida, i might want to then travel by train to washington and spent a couple of days and get back on the train and go to , on my couple of days own time schedule, and then move onto, say, yosemite, san francisco, and then come back for grant canyon, new orleans, back to florida. it might be a fashion similar to the eurorail pass which allows me the flex ability to do my own scheduling within a certain timeframe -- may be up there for 15 days, maybe for 30 days. but again, using one for coach
9:37 am
and then another one using sleeper service. host: mr. boardman, that idea -- guest: well, amtrak has done stuff like that in the past and they may do it again in terms of ridership. we are pretty full and the long- distance trains, making it very difficult to do those kinds of things you're looking for. there would be probably a fairly high premium to be able to do shat kind of thing for rider today. our service, while we think it is very important for people to see the united states through the long-distance trains, really has a different character for every one of the services we provide out there, whether it is the empire building which operates along the northern border, or the sunset limited, which operates along the southern border. host: joseph boardman and adding new amtrak ridership numbers today for fiscal year 2013. a new record in amtrak's history.
9:38 am
he is taking your calls, comments, and question this morning over twitter and e-mail, if you want to do that as well. sam is waiting on the phone from manassas, virginia, on our line for democrats. guest: there is a train out in manassas. caller: good morning to you guys. thank you for the work you do. my first question has already been answered about government money to you guys. guyscond question is, you are not well-known. i don't know how much you do i'm talking about the passenger lines, but coming from new york to d.c., i can't come there actually two manassas . i have to go to d.c. and it cost me more money to get back at it is not like the transit line. i want to know how much you talk on the media about amtrak.
9:39 am
people don't know much about amtrak. host: amtrak's advertising -- how do you get to know more -- get people to know more? guest: i think we have a pretty good marketing program, but we have to keep that cost down as well. we have grown our social media and people are probably tweeting right now about me being on here. we are changing the way we see the need to market and part of that need isn't social media, and i'm not a social media guy ore, but twitter or pinit whatever it is that julian the team in amtrak is working on, it is improving our ability to market to different people. host: you go to congress and talk about these funds each year . who is the amtrak lobby? if you're competing with other transportation sectors, but the airline industry, they have a lobbying presence.
9:40 am
guest: we don't lobby. we belong to the merkin public transit association, we belong to aar, part of the railroads up there today to educate. we talk to members and those that are interested in the amtrak services. what you are going to find is that most of the members are in one fashion or form or another interested. we provide service to 46 of the 48 states in the lower 48. they become very important services to the communities that we operate in. therehere that we operate is an economic growth in that community. amtrak is there and it takes people up and drop them off. you would have the investment today in denver -- you wouldn't have the investment today in denver, the huge investment they are making in downtown denver, had amtrak not continue to provide service in denver or salt lake city, or even now in sacramento. it hard tou find
9:41 am
compete against the other transportation sectors? do you see it as competition? guest: it depends on what you are really talking about. i have a divided belief about that, and that is that in most ways we need to collaborate and work together. i think collaboration is what we are really about here for the future. if you are going to have a system that really works well -- we have the megabus and some of the other folks here in union station here with us -- and that grows the total amount of people growing and public transportation. withe a real connectivity commuter services, but services, those kinds of things. competition in commuter railroads for contract services and so we see that differently, but overall, providing mobility to the country, we are the backbone and the spine of the united states.
9:42 am
guest: no. host: ok. what is the pain you are wearing today -- pin you are wearing today? guest: amtrak 14th anniversary pin. anniversary host: patrick is up next from california on our line for republicans. caller: hello, mr. boardman. guest: good morning. caller: out here i used the pacific surf line regularly and quite frankly the service's abysmal. five to 30 minutes late on a regular basis. and you have a staff culture which is like the post office, where you have employees more worried about the civil service style jobs than the actual service. i will take my answer off the line. ok, thank you.
9:43 am
i'm sorry you had that kind of experience. , highe good ridership ridership on the west coast. st is up to 2.7 million rider a year. it was 2.5 a few years ago. we work with the caltrans operation. we do see more things that we can improve, and we see a lot of comments on the service itself. , if youparticular case haven't been happy, i hope we can make improvements in that area. we're on day 14 of the government shutdown. how was the shutdown affected amtrak? guest: we are still running. host: how are amtrak employees -- did any of those get furloughed? guest: only the office of the inspector general, which is reliant on appropriations.
9:44 am
we are not completely reliant on a portray -- appropriations. private company and we are operating our services and we have seen in the first six days -- i did not look at this last week, but we saw about a 10% reduction of ridership on the core door. we did not see the same reduction long-distance. host: if the shutdown continues for weeks or months am a will ?mtrak be impacted guest: we will continue to operate on thanksgiving and right on through. and it5 is locked up will be especially locked up on the thanksgiving holiday. we carry three times more passengers on the trains than the airlines combined in that particular market. shutdown continues, would you need specific action by times to make sure you
9:45 am
continue to rent? guest: we think congress ought to be open again and the debt limit on the handle not only for amtrak but for everybody in this country. host: sue is up next in austin, texas on our line for democrats. you are on with joseph boardman, president and ceo of amtrak. guest: good morning, sue. caller: good morning. i must say i'm really kind of disappointed to find out that so lowstance travel is compared to the rest, because i'm 62, and i started on trains when they still had smokestacks. i went from philadelphia to chicago and that the texas -- can you hear -- to austin. i found the trip so enjoyable that about five years ago i put my children on the train and we
9:46 am
know, first- class, still so much cheaper than an airplane could be. we had an unfortunate incident where i got food stuck in my throat, and i was sort of in a medical problem for them the whole way to chicago, because -- this was on the way back to ohio. said "anywhere you want to stop, we will stop." i knew i was ok, i knew i could breathe, and i really wanted to get to chicago and then get off the train. they were the most wonderful people. they continuously helped us, , who weremy children
9:47 am
in that young at the time, but they kept them reassured that mom would be ok. at the station with an ambulance. the next day they honor my ticket even though it was late, ungei got to go up to the lo that they had for the sleeper cars. it was just wonderful. as far as i'm concerned, if you don't have to be there yesterda y, you should always take the train. host: mr. boardman, a different view on customer service from our california caller earlier. guest: a better view, isn't it? i appreciate your call, and that our staff was able to help you. we believe the safety of our -- and ofin novem
9:48 am
our staff is the highest priority. safety and customer service and financial performance really round out what we are looking for. i'm glad you had a trip. i wanted to address something else in terms of ridership onis pretty good ridership the long-distance trains, when you consider the fact that especially our western trains, we're talking about over 2000 miles of travel from one into the other. we provide a service where somebody, for example, in the middle of the country that might have children that live on the west coast, or the east coast, can get there from the middle of the country. if they don't have a car or aviation -- you see that the assistance and aviation are abandoning smaller communities -- amtrak is there. we see those small businesses growing in those communities across this country. there is not the number of people there are on the 2 coasts
9:49 am
but we tied together. safety is your top priority. how safe is rail travel? guest: the safest way to travel. -- the fraok administrator -- we see continued reduction in the number of accidents and evenents in this country, crossing accidents, which are particularly problematic for railroads, because people do theate and go around barriers and some of those kinds of things. we have an excellent safety record in this country. host: you started in this job at amtrak about the same time the ofl safety improvement act 2008 was passed. what is that improvement act, what has been called positive train control? guest: with the rail we own on the northeast corridor and perhaps all but the final
9:50 am
touches in the michigan corridor we operate with positive train control. we left completed what has been called -- we had already started. host: what makes it positive train control -- when you use that term, what are you talking about? guest: positive train control allows you to have a train that can't run into each other on the same track. let me give you why i am saying it that way. if you have an accident like one of our commuter rails had it last year, one train came off one track and hit the other train on the other track. --itive train control isn't doesn't fix that. that is about the infrastructure that needs to be repaired in this country in terms of track. but positive train control will not allow 2 trains to be in the same track, on the same area of the track, if we have highway or roadway workers in the train didn't slow down enough, the electronics take control and stop the train. called foract had
9:51 am
positive train control to be limited by december 21, 2015 -- to be limited by 2030 -- and lamented by december 31, 23rd -- 2015. guest: i expect that amtrak will meet the deadline. we have seven michigan that that i did not check for this -- his stuff in michigan that i did not check for this particular interview. host: we have a little less than 10 minutes left on "washington journal." the gnu c announced earlier -- the news he announced earlie, new ridership numbers for 2013. from 2012. michael is from brooklyn, new york, on our line for republicans. guest: morning, michael. host: michael, are you there? caller: good morning, john, good morning -- yes, good morning
9:52 am
, mr. boardman. i wonder thank the board for isosing this topic, which accessible for every people in their community. first, i want to have mr. boardman comment on my suggestion that i'm telling you guys. first is that if the public , the budgetons dedicated by the government and public expedition is enough -- public transportation is enough. some of the people i'm telling to have a discussion with them, .hey are not sophisticated -- somecate them to the of them are people in their committee are suffering from it and dying because they're poor. if you dedicate money to them in the budget to the health care so
9:53 am
they can fix their problems. my second comment is there any protocol -- articles for poor people that they can use the free tickets for their public transportations? community,, in their people in the poor and the medium class -- if they want to use their public transportations, because they have insufficient money, so they cannot use it exactly like other people. is there anything that the government have in the project especially for these kinds of groups to give them their free tickets? dman, outreach efforts to lower income folks by amtrak? --st: it is not just amtrak public transportation overall, and certainly in brooklyn they have probably more public
9:54 am
transportation than anywhere else in the united states. when you really look at the subsidized level for public transportation in the new york a much greater level of subsidies because they don't cover as many of their costs as amtrak does. amtrak is a private corporation that is subsidized from the federal government for especially long-distance trains but also for the capital in the northeast corridor or. service.e a lower fare regional services are less expensive than the premium service. we recognize we need to have a of service forle folks, but you have a greater number of commuter operators and other train services in the northeast and government does provide assistance for those who need the assistance in new york and other areas of the northeast.
9:55 am
it becomes more of a government responsibility to talk about those policy questions on what the level of subsidy should be ,or the passengers themselves or those who choose to either ride the train or the bus or another piece of public transportation. host: we have been showing video clips this morning, as you have been talking, shots taken of union station and the amtrak facilities there. union station celebrating a big anniversary on its grand reopening. what was the grand reopening 25 years ago? guest: 100 years, really. oh, you mean grand reopening because of the refurbishing. amtrak is to be located -- their offices in this building when they got started back in the 1970s. it was really a recognition that union station is back. we do have plans for union station to be a much in your terminal for the future -- much bigger terminal for the future
9:56 am
with a double decking of the transcend services and real estate developer and in the mega area across the street here that we see growth and for the future. expectation, and union station is a dutiful facility, that we can't -- there is an education -- and union station is a beautiful facility -- that we can provide connectivity that rivals the europeans. host: what do you see being in the future? guest: we're pretty close to services and marc amtrak at this time. we see a need to grow substantially. i don't have a number front of us right now on what the growth really will be, but you are seeing more and more ridership, you are seeing them grow just in the four years we talking about here, 16% overall on the corridor itself. northeast corridor, we have grown 15%. station,ks in to the
9:57 am
ability, we hope, to go faster along the corridor, much smoother ride. host: debbie is up next to talk to joseph boardman, president and ceo of amtrak. debbie is from texas on our line for independents. caller: good morning. i thoroughly enjoyed all the travel i've been able to do from dell rio to the panhandle part of florida. but since katrina, about 2005, they've shut down the new orleans-to-jacksonville section and i can't get there from here anymore. i was just wondering if there of any hope for restoration that section of the sunset limited. thank you. guest: thank you. i think we -- people ask that question, and you can get there but you have to go to chicago first, or you have to go to new orleans and back to washington. we understand the difficulty of that. that john was law
9:58 am
talking about was established, one of the things they asked us to do and we did was a study of what it would cost to reconnect that service to the panhandle and into florida. host: where were that service go? guest: that would operate from san antonio all the way to orlando, to the east. we gave congress the number. it was a fairly substantial number, and it was up to them to decide whether they have the money available to be able to do that, and they did not. from we go to marry franklin, tennessee, on our line for democrats. mary, good morning. caller: good morning, good morning. this is such a timely deal. i don't fly at all anymore. wall street has cheapened the airlines so much i just don't see safety there anymore. is ai would really love depot in nashville. i could go all over the country. i can't drive anymore.
9:59 am
i'm getting a little older. the best way to get financing is through people buying stocks and bonds. -- a fund, ah, shoot there are funds that deal expressly with trains. if people would like to get out of the icky stock market where they are playing with derivatives and everything, well, if you could buy something congress,-- forget they are only interested in the oil companies, they will not help with the rail system. but also with the bad weather -- we have such crazy weather nowadays -- you haven't had an experience of sitting in an airline like i have because the snow or fog. by traveling by rail, you would be skipping all of that -- host: mr. boardman, i will give
10:00 am
you the last 30 seconds. travelfirst of all, air is safe. we know that and we support that. secondly, what is important to understand is, long-distance trn the united states needs to be a contract between amtrak and congress. that is where we need to be for that service. they need to understand that is what we have to have. they cannot keep sweeping dollars away from the northeast corridor for the investments we need for the future and they need to continue with the bargain that was made in 1971 that no services are continue to be provided across the country. the economy of the nation, especially the middle of the country, depends on that. appreciate you coming on. that is our show for today. the house will meet at noon today for morning hour, 2:00 for legislative business.